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New laws coming to California in 2022

The California State Capitol in the early evening in Sacramento, Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2016.
Associated Press
The California State Capitol in the early evening in Sacramento, Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2016.

New laws that could impact your day-to-day life will be going into effect the first of the new year. There are new laws around housing, climate change, police reform and many more. Scott Rodd, state government reporter for CapRadio joined KPBS Midday Edition on Friday to talk about some of the new laws.

Senate Bill No. 332: Prescribed Burns
Rodd said this new law aims to increase prescribed burning and reduce wildfires. It reduces the liability for people carrying out prescribed burns.

"The purpose of prescribed burning or controlled burning is to reintroduce fire to the landscape, whether that's a forest or other wildlands in a controlled way, to mimic fire's natural, low-intensity role. That helps eliminate dangerous fire fuels," Rodd said. "The law reduces the liability for people doing these prescribed burns. Someone has to be grossly negligent in order for them to be found liable for damages if the burn gets out of control."


Senate Bill No. 9: Housing
Rodd said SB-9 allows multi-family homes, such as duplexes and fourplexes, to be built in neighborhoods zoned as single-family neighborhoods.

Senate Bill No. 2: Police Reform
"Senate Bill No. 2 is one of a number of recent police reform laws that have gone into effect in recent years," Rodd said. "This one essentially creates a system and a process for decertifying police officers if they've acted badly. It essentially tries to end the practice of police officers hopping from one department to another if they've violated the law or if they've done something to essentially breach that trust with the public. This creates that process where if an officer commits a certain offense, they won't be able to hop from department to department."

RELATED: Bringing home the bacon tops new California laws in 2022

Senate Bill No. 787: Animal Welfare
Rodd said this new law going into effect on Jan. 1 requires pigs, calves and hens raised for food to have room to move and lay down at farms. The law bans the sale of products from facilities nationwide that don’t meet the guidelines.

"The big concern here is pork products, especially bacon. California gets a lot of its pork from out of state, and farmers and producers around the country are pushing back on this new law, saying they can't comply with these new restrictions and they haven't had enough time," Rodd said. "We've been seeing some lawsuits filed over this, coming from both farmers and industry groups representing restaurants. They're concerned that this could increase prices, and reduce supply of pork products at a time when supply chain issues are already kind of creating issues at the grocery store and for restaurants."


Senate Bill No. 1383: Composting and Organics Recycling
"The state wants to avoid sending food waste to landfills, so it's turning it into composting or biofuel," Rodd said. "The goal is to not only use this food waste, but also to avoid having it go to landfills which then creates methane."

He said local governments will be deciding how residents should dispose of food scraps.

Senate Bill No. 389: Cocktails To-go
"There was an emergency COVID rule that allowed restaurants to sell to-go cocktails with meals, and this law extends that for the next five years," Rodd said.

Rodd said this rule helped businesses stay open and it turned out to be very popular among both business owners and customers who were ordering more food to go. He said there's a two-drink maximum per meal, and the to-go cocktails must be served in containers and clearly labeled. Public consumption is not allowed.

Lawmakers can revisit this law in five years to make a renewal decision.

The Office of Governor Gavin Newsom published a list of more laws going into effect on Jan. 1, 2022.

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